Social networking in Canada - Statistics & Facts

Owing to the most basic human desire, communication, social media are gaining more and more in popularity, both among the general population who simply enjoy the facilitated interaction, and business professionals who see it as a successful marketing and recruiting tool. Social media comes in many forms, from photo-sharing platforms to social gaming or chat apps, but especially social networks. In fact, in 2017, the number of social network users in Canada amounted to 22.69 million.

The most recent data shows that Facebook has the highest percentage of internet users in Canada accessing the platform – 84 percent compared to 59 percent accessing YouTube. Twitter is also experiencing growth and is expected to grow its user base from over 3.3 million in 2012 to some 7.6 million users in 2020. Based on mobile share of visits, however, Twitter ranks third among Canadians, with Pinterest taking the second spot, and Facebook remaining the unquestionable leader of social networks visited via mobile.

Data pertaining to the frequency of social network usage in Canada reveals that 54 percent of Facebook users access the platform at least once daily, with 23 percent of YouTube users saying the same. Even more interesting is the activity occurring on social platforms. A total of 28.5 percent of Canadian Facebook users admitted to being very active; posting, sharing, liking or commenting on various things, with 49.3 percent reading or liking content despite not posting their own. For Twitter these figures are lower, with 48.6 percent of responding Canadian users saying that they mostly read content posted by others and tend not to interact, whereas Instagrammers behave similarly to Facebook users.

With habitual usage and increased interactions, social networks are fast becoming a powerful marketing tool. According to the most recently published data, social media engagement is the most widely used digital marketing activity among surveyed Canadian companies, more so than web development or search engine optimization. It is unsurprising then that there has been a notable increase in marketing spending in order to use that space and screen time to promote products and services. In 2018, social media ad revenue in Canada is expected to reach over 590 million U.S. dollars, with the largest share of these revenues being generated through mobile ads.

Influencer marketing is also on the rise in Canada, with 29 percent of 15 to 34 year olds saying that they had purchased video games as a result of a social media content creator’s influence. Further, 83 percent of responding Canadians in this age bracket admitted to having made a purchase after seeing a positive customer review on social media, and similarly 74 percent chose not to make a purchase upon seeing a negative customer review. Consumers aged between 15 and 18 years old are most likely to follow YouTubers, with 61 percent of respondents in this age bracket doing so compared to 37 percent of those aged between 25 and 34.

The figures suggest that video marketing to younger consumers is likely to be more successful than to their older peers, and with video on the rise, the social networking landscape could be set to change dramatically as more brands and content creators turn to social media to interact with their target audience.

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